Disaster strikes on ESXi 3.5

In the morning I deleted a virtual switch that I had thought wasn't being used by anything via the Infrastucture Client. Fast forward to the afternoon and suddenly a whole bunch of VM's can't be started or accessed and I am completely paranoid that it's my fault, though I can't rationalise why it would be my fault quite yet.

After restarting the ESX server over half our VM's now show as Unknown (Inaccessible), and two of our four datastores are missing (one of which was 2TB).

The 2TB datastore was definitely on our san because I know it was setup when we recently purchased more storage. Unfortunately I didn't do it, nor do I even know the details. The other datastore? I have no idea where it was located but there are really only two possibilities:
1. The ESX server
2. The SAN

Ironically, I am on the very cusp of migrating all of our VM's onto a Hyper-V server - which is frustrating when you're going from ESXi 3.5 to Hyper-V 7.

I've searched the hard drives of both systems for any .vmx files but have only found the ones that are already in the remaining datastores.

Can anyone lend any advice?
VMs.png
harrisbenAsked:
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Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
Deleting of a Virtual Switch, should not affect, the availability of the VM, apart from

LOSS OF NETWORKING to the VM. (BUT.....see below, if the vSwitch....)

It looks like you have a LUN failure, loss of networking to the SAN.

It's very likely, that you have deleted a vSwitch, which also had the iSCSI (if you are using iSCSI) VMKernel Portgroup, which carries all the traffic to the SAN, and access the LUN, and hence the datastores.

So remove the VMKernel Portgroup, all the ESXi loses access to the SAN, LUNs, and Datastores, and the VMs are stored on the datastores, so all the VMs are gone.

So we just need to reconnect your ESXi host back to SAN (recreate new vSwitch etc).

Can you screenshot networking, and I can work with you to get you backup and running...
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harrisbenAuthor Commented:
Thanks, here's the screenshot.
Networking.png
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Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
The missing datastores, are they on an iSCSI SAN?
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harrisbenAuthor Commented:
Ummm... Yes I believe they are.
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Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
Okay can you check storage iscsi initiator in storage devices

Check for IP address
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harrisbenAuthor Commented:
Please forgive my ignorance, is that what you're after?
iScsi.png
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Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
Yes, that's correct.

Do you know how to add a VMKernel Port Group?
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harrisbenAuthor Commented:
I do, are there any special setting I should consider?
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Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
Ensure

1. it's on the correct LAN, e.g. assign correct physical nic to vSwitch

2. assign IP Address on the same subnet as the IP SAN

3. Configure for multipath if applicable?
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harrisbenAuthor Commented:
The help provided lead me to where I needed to be!
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harrisbenAuthor Commented:
I have solved this, thanks in no small part to hanccocka.

I added the ip address of my san into the Dynamic Discovery tab of the iScsi Software Adapter in Storage Adapters and my missing LUN's, Datastores , and VM's are back and functioning.

I couldn't add a new VMKernel because it kept returning a conflict to do with the address whenever I tried to assign an ip in the same subnet as my san. I suspect this was because there was already a VMKernel in that ip range on the existing vSwitch.

I also added my second network adapter to the existing vSwitch so that it was used, rather than being unassigned.

Thank you so much for your help!
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Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
No problems!
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